Lynch's agent confirmed with the Associated Press on Monday that the running back intends to retire, Sheil Kapadia of ESPN.com reports. Every leak over the last two days has pointed to Lynch calling it a career, from Adam Schefter of ESPN stating Sunday that the RB has shared his thought process with teammates, Lynch himself tweeting a 'peace' emoji and a picture of green cleats hanging from a nail during the fourth quarter of Super Bowl 50, and the Seahawks' official site acknowledging the announcement shortly thereafter. The comments from Lynch's agent appear to be the cherry on top of the sundae, but the media-shy enigma will likely hold a press conference at some point to clear the final hurdle to retirement.
Lynch suggested on his twitter account that he plans to retire this offseason. Lynch tweeted a hand making the 'peace' symbol, accompanied by a picture of green cleats hanging from a nail. Given the timing of his announcement -- during the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl -- there's perhaps some chance that Lynch is just messing with the media. However, it seems far more likely that he really does intend to retire, as there have been rumors to that effect since the end of Seattle's season.
According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Lynch has shared his intention to retire with both teammates and some within the Seahawks' organization. Lynch had been a model of reliability during his time in Seattle, playing in 85 of 86 games between his arrival in 2010 and last year's Super Bowl. However, the additional reps taken on due to successive deep playoff runs appeared to take a toll in 2015, as he suffered through a hamstring injury early and abdominal surgery that combined to hold him out of nine regular season contests. After staying home during the Seahawks' wild-card win at Minnesota, he returned for the divisional round in Carolina but managed only six carries for 20 yards and two receptions for 15 yards. If he decides to hang up the cleats and tinted visor, he'll conclude his career with 9,122 rushing yards, 1,979 receiving yards, and 83 touchdowns (74 on the ground) in 127 games between the Seahawks and Bills.
Lynch is leaning toward retirement, according to Seahawks' general manager John Schneider, The Seattle Times reports. Lynch's future with the Seahawks stands in considerable question to begin this offseason, but in speaking about Lynch during a radio interview, Schneider said, "I'm under the impression he is leaning towards retirement." That revelation comes as the Seahawks are reportedly prepared to release Lynch, or at least require him to restructure his contract ahead of next season. An enigma himself, Lynch may ultimately supersede any move by deciding to retire anyway. That being said, as usual with Lynch, it's tough to project what will end up happening.
Lynch is unlikely to be back with the Seahawks at his scheduled 2016 salary, 710 AM ESPN Seattle reports. Assuming he wants to continue his career, which shouldn't be taken for granted, Lynch will likely be asked to take a pay cut or else be outright released. He's still a difficult man to tackle, but with Thomas Rawls (ankle) coming off an impressive rookie season, the Seahawks have an attractive alternative at the position, assuming Rawls' recovery from a broken ankle goes well.
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